Making History: JMU Softball upsets No. 1 Oklahoma 4-3 in first-ever WCWS appearance

Making History: JMU Softball upsets No. 1 Oklahoma 4-3 in first-ever WCWS appearance
The JMU softball team upset No. 1 Oklahoma in its first-ever game in the Women's College World Series (Source: NCAA Photos)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - In their first-ever game in the Women’s College World Series, the JMU softball team went to extra innings, and knocked off the top-seed in the tournament.

The Dukes defeated Oklahoma 4-3 in eight innings on Thursday in Oklahoma City.

“I know a lot of people out there thought we were going to just get here, and be done, but this team wanted to do some damage,” says JMU head coach Loren LaPorte. “I feel like we played composed, and we played JMU softball, from the 1st inning.”

The Sooners came into the match-up with a record of 50-2.

They were ranked No. 1 for most of the season, led the nation with a .421 batting average, and outscored opponents by an average of 11.33 to 1.82.

“We’re enjoying it,” says senior Kate Gordon. “We’re soaking in the fans, soaking in the atmosphere in this experience. I think we came into the game, knowing, ‘This is another game. This team put their pants on the same way we did, and we just have to go out there and show them who JMU softball is.’”

Kate Gordon hit a solo home run in the top of the 8th inning for the go-ahead run, and Odicci Alexander kept OU off the scoreboard in the bottom of the inning.

All of the runs were scored on home runs.

Sara Jubas gave JMU the lead with a three-run home run in the top of the 3rd inning, and the Sooners answered with a three-run shot in the bottom of the inning.

Alexander pitched a complete game in the circle, allowing three runs on six hits with nine strikeouts.

“It is a different atmosphere,” says Alexander. “I was just trying to embrace the moment; enjoy every moment. This is our first time here, and I wouldn’t rather be here with anybody else, other than my teammates. I couldn’t be more proud of the fight, and the grit, and the heart, and the passion that they had out there.”

LaPorte says, “We just told them in the locker room, ‘Yes, we just did one of the most historic things that has ever happened in JMU history, and in the history of the game, itself, but we go back to the locker room, we watch this game, and we prepare. It’s on to the next.’”

James Madison (40-2) will take on 5-seed Oklahoma State in the Winner’s Bracket of the double-elimination tournament on Friday at 7pm in Oklahoma City.

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